There’s a story told about a pub somewhere in Australia that used to keep an eagle tethered to the ground, as a sort of public attraction. The eagle would just walk round and round in circles all day long, waiting to be fed on scraps of meat, usually for the entertainment of the customers. Well, the pub eventually changed hands and the new landlord thought it cruel to keep the eagle tethered to the ground, so he cut the bonds and set it free. The eagle, however, instead of using its freedom and flying away from the thing that had held it in bondage for so long, just continued to walk round in circles.
It’s a similar story with Christians: We have received forgiveness and with it a release from the prison that once held us. We have been set free from the bondage of sin that once had such a hold on us. Now, we’re called to use our freedom! Instead of remaining a slave to sin we must choose instead to become a slave to righteousness: to follow Christ and live a life that pleases him.